June 2018 Highlights

In June, we approved the FY2019 city budget.  First, here are reminders about bulky item pickup in July and the Independence Day impacts on city sanitation collection schedules.

Bulky item pickup schedules in July:     Much of the Southwest Ward is scheduled for the city’s annual bulky item pickup collection during the first two weeks of July.  If your Southwest Ward neighborhood is south of US 421 west of its I-40 interchange, your pickup week probably starts July 2, and if your neighborhood is east of that interchange but south of I-40, it probably starts July 9.  Don’t miss your bulky pickup opportunity!  Get all the details on the city’s free bulky item pickup service and check to see when your street is scheduled here:  http://www.cityofws.org/departments/sanitation/collections/bulky-items

City sanitation collection schedule changes for Independence Day week:     Garbage, recycling, and yard waste collections for the week beginning July 2 will all be affected by the Independence Day holiday.

--Garbage collections:  Tuesday routes will follow their normal schedule, but Wednesday and Thursday routes will be postponed one day (Wednesday routes on Thursday, Thursday routes on Friday).  Friday routes will be collected July 9.

--Recycling collections:  Monday and Tuesday routes will follow their usual schedule.  Wednesday through Friday routes will be postponed one day.

--Yard waste carts:  Monday and Tuesday routes will follow their usual schedule.  Wednesday through Friday routes will be postponed one day.

FY2019 city budget approved:     On June 18, the city council approved Winston-Salem’s city budget for FY2019.  The approved budget contains planned pay increases for city employees, including market competitiveness adjustments for public safety officers and other below-market salary positions, as well as increasing city government’s minimum hourly wage to $12.50/hour.  By incorporating cost-saving efficiency moves as well, we were able to approve a budget which accomplishes those goals while leaving the city property tax rate unchanged.  See the full details here:  http://www.cityofws.org/Budget

Other budget notes:     Two other work contracts were approved at our June 18 meeting that may be of interest to Southwest Ward residents:

--The construction contract for the Miller Street sidewalk from Cloverdale Avenue to the Five Points intersection was approved, with work expected this summer.

--A contract for bike lane/route marking was approved, also with work expected this summer.  Among the eight routes to be marked are two partially in the Southwest Ward:   Hawthorne Road from Silas Creek Parkway to First Street, and Academy Street from Irving Street to S. Marshall Street.  (The other four routes included in this contract are N. Stratford Road, Northwest Blvd./14th St., N. Liberty Street, 5th St./Old Greensboro Road, Trade St., and N. Cleveland Ave.)

“Goat farm” rezoning decision:     A remarkable turnout of concerned neighborhood residents shaped the city council’s final decision on the requested rezoning of the old “goat farm” property on Ebert Street at Silas Creek Parkway.  The controversial sticking point in that proposal was its inclusion of commercial offices in the request.  Inclusion of commercial uses on this currently residential-only zoned site was not consistent with the relevant small area plan, and was actively opposed by the Ardmore Neighborhood Association.  For the final case hearing on June 18, both the city council chamber and the overflow meeting room were filled to standing room only levels for the meeting.  There was some support for the rezoning request, but more than 100 neighborhood residents turned out to express their opposition to the request to allow commercial uses on Ebert Street north of Silas Creek Parkway.  The opposition was based on the expected increase of traffic in an already congested area, and on concern for the potential of further “commercial creep” into a sensitive residential area.  On my motion, the council in a close vote turned down the rezoning request.

Since the owners elected to take the case through to a final decision vote, and it was denied, they cannot make any other rezoning request for the property for at least a year.  I believe that if they return following that period and are prepared to discuss a residential-only plan for the site, they will find the great majority of neighbors more than ready to discuss options that can move forward on a broad consensus basis. 

Malloy Park groundbreaking:     On June 19, I took part in the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Nelson Malloy Park at 2615 Bethabara Road.  That’s up on the north side of town, but this new park is of citywide interest.  It will be the first park in Winston-Salem to be designed and built as completely handicapped-accessible, with facilities especially designed for accessibility for all.  I look forward to the ribbon-cutting for this new park when it’s completed.

Business 40 work:     Construction-related closures are picking up this summer, leading up to the complete closure of Business 40 from Peters Creek Parkway to US 52 for 20 months starting in November.  Keep up with the latest on work schedules, planned lane closures, and other related information here:  www.business40nc.com 


Have a safe and fun Independence Day holiday!

That’s my report for June.  As always, you are welcome to contact me with comments or questions at danbesse@danbesse.org.  Thanks!